It’s hard to believe that we are almost at the half-way point of the 2020 NFL season. This crazy year is flying by, now that we have things like televised sports to entertain us again.
Week 7 is a bit flippity floppity with the schedule. We have some matchup changes and byes that wouldn’t have happened before all the pandemic action made its way into NFL locker rooms this October.
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The Dolphins were supposed to play this week, but instead, they have a bye. The latest reports say that the Fins are going to bench their red hot starter in Ryan Fitzmagic and put Tua in during Week 8. So, apparently, they think that they’ve seen enough in practice and with a by week and three straight weeks in Miami, that they have enough time to get Tua Tagovailoa ready for the Los Angeles Rams visit.
Tua took the field and no one was more pumped about it than Ryan Fitzpatrick, the player that was replaced by the rookie QB.
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) October 18, 2020
San Francisco 49ers @ New England Patriots -2.5
The public is already pounding the San Francisco 49ers line, pumping up the underdogs. If this keeps going, soon they’ll be +2 underdogs.
I actually really like the 49ers to cover the number in this game. And to be honest, I already have my ticket in for the Red and Gold to get the back door cover at +3. Yes, took the Niners with the extra half point for push protection at the fair price of -121. I actually think the 49ers have a great chance of winning outright in this game. They have the No. 1 road defense in the NFL right now and the No. 2 road offense.
That said, the sample size is small. And I do expect the Patriots offense to play better this week than last. Additionally, the Patriots defense is still pretty dang good. They allow just 16.33 per game at home, which ranks No. 4 in the league’s scoring defenses. On top of this, they have the No. 4 rated passing defense. Their main shortcoming is against the run, where the Pats rank 20th at home and 18th overall, allowing 119.20 yards per game. This falls right ionto the 49ers top-ten rushing stat. For this reason, I think the Niners will be able to control the clock and keep this game within kicking distance.
Carolina Panthers @ New Orleans Saints OVER/UNDER 51
Here is another game where I like the dog against the point spread. That said, I’m more interested in the TOTAL. Thanks to a non-existent defense, the over has cashed in seven straight Carolina Panthers games. Not only this, over the last 5 games against teams in the NFC South, the OVER has cashed 4 times. The OVER has also cashed in 5 of the previous 5 Saints games.
The Saints are averaging 31.33 points per game at home in Mercedes-Benze Super Dome. The Carolina Panthers are putting up 20.33 per game on the road. Perhaps this is where the bookmakers got the TOTAL betting line. Some might be nervous about the Panthers putting up their fair share of the points because Christain McCaffery is out. But Mike Davis is a vet who has step neatly into the fold.
Even the defenses add up. The Saints have allowed 29 per game at home, while the Panthers 21 points. So, there are 50 right there. I believe that the NOLA Saints’ well-rounded mix of Drew Brees and Lavin Kamara able to pound the rock and catch out of the backfield will result in more than 30 points going up on the boards. At the same time, I think the less-than-stellar Saints defense will let a sub-par Panthers squad get at least to the middle 20s. The Saints’ problem is they play quite well around the middle of the field, but their defense collapses when opposing offenses hit the RedZone.
I am also going to make a small play for the Panther to over -7.5. The Saints have bot covered the number well at home, and the Panthers have a history of ATS covers in October – 6-2 ATS in last eight October games. Meanwhile, the Saints are 2-6 ATS over their last eight home games and 2-4 ATS over their last six games in general.